By Rev. Carol Bodeau
A few weeks ago, I gave a sermon about things we can do to help the environment. I talked about the book by Theidore Geissel or “Dr. Seuss” called The Lorax. In the book, an old ‘oncler’ who was responsible for the destruction of an entire species of trees—Truffula trees—tells the tale of his own foolishness to a listener whom, he hopes, will plant the last Truffula seed and start a process of renewal. As part of that service, I gave a list of things we might do today to make a difference for our environment, planting our own ‘Truffula seeds’ for a better future.
Here's what the list included:
1. Ridesharing on Sunday mornings, and combining trips into town or out adventuring whenever possible
2. Shopping locally: buy things, especially food, that didn’t travel across the planet to get to you
3. Buy sustainably produced products whenever possible, which means
4. Reading labels, knowing where and how your food was grown, where and how your clothing and shoes were made, and what forests were cut down to make your toilet paper (An aside—the Virgin Old Growth Boreal forests of Canada are in serious trouble to make our TP— as of 2020, Procter & Gamble, Kimberly-Clark and Georgia-Pacific were the worst offenders, and finding out their sourcing is a challenge. Recycled TP may be a little rougher on us, but it’s much, much easier on the planet.)
5. Eliminating single-use plastics from your life—that includes water bottles and plastic packaging at the store. Did you know you can get sustainable, reusable produce bags?
6. Shopping for clothing by real need, not by fashions desires and trends.
7. Better yet, shop at resale and consignment stores whenever possible. And not just for clothing. Just how many hangers, pumpkin cookie jars, and ceramic Santa’s does one nation actually need, after all?
8. Practicing stay-cations more often than away-cations. There’s a lot right near home that is worth exploring, and saves on the fossil fuels.
9. Wearing more sweaters (second-hand sweaters) in the winter
10. And for us as a community at Westside, recommitting to a Green Sanctuary Movement, which got a lot of support in theory but which never made it out of the email stage into committee.
If you are interested in helping get a Green Sanctuary movement going at Westside, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. This is something we can do together, to make positive change.
In faith and hope, Rev. Carol